Your beer education continues, this time we learn how to prepare for the anticipated festival visit.
Book your festival tickets in advance as most prominent beer festivals have a tendency to sell out before event dates. With the joys of technology, you don’t even have to leave your home to purchase tickets as most tickets are available online, so no excuses!
Ensure that you get a good night’s rest, a minimum of eight hours. You do not want to pitch up at the event and find yourself feeling groggy, it will not be pleasant and it could hinder your experience at the festival.
Make an effort to learn about different varieties of beers. Most people generally stick to two to three brands of beers so their beer knowledge is very limited. Get out of your comfort zone and order other beers when you go out. This will get you to appreciate other beers and make your palate accustomed to other types of beer.
Do not do things during or before the event that will desensitise your beer palate. Smoking is a big no no. Cigarettes are known to dull your taste buds. Also avoid overly salty food as excess salt is also known to inhibit your taste buds.
Occasionally, sample malt hops and other common beer ingredients that are accessible. It’s not exactly divine but just have a small sample. Tasting the raw ingredients will enhance your palate’s ability to detect the different elements of the beer.
Research in advance, there are some awesome beer festivals as we pointed out in Beer Festivals Part One – World’s Best Festivals. Trawl the internet to make an educated decision (or better still, just revert back to part one). There may be a festival happening in a country that you have been keen on visiting so you can also kill two birds with one stone.
Train your taste buds to become more sensitive to beer by adopting this technique. Drink two different beers simultaneously. With each sip, alternate between beers. This method will assist you by teaching you how to detect the subtle differences in flavour, texture, aroma, etc.
Fill your gut before you leave home. All festivals will have food on sale but they could be pricey. Eating at home will also ensure that you will not be too full when it’s beer time. A full stomach will slow down the entrance of the alcohol into your bloodstream. If you are going to be spending a few hours at the festival, snack from time to time.
Draw enough cash before you attend the festival. Some stalls may not have any card facilities available and even if they do, malfunctions can happen, though unlikely but always cover all bases.
Check relevant weather forecasts for an inkling of what type of weather to expect. It could be quiet a nasty experience if a sudden storm arises and you have dressed like a Hawaii Five-0 extra.
Wear a comfortable pair of shoes. You will be doing a lot of walking so be kind to your feet.
Do some homework about the beers that will be available for tasting. Make a list of all the beers that appeal to you so you can look for specific beers at the festival. As many festivals have a massive variety of beer available for sampling, it becomes difficult to sample everything.
Follow these pointers, and you will be all set to have a blast, come festival day.